Thursday, March 1, 2012

I'm in New York!

Hello friends and family!
         I live in New York now! It was a great last week at the MTC.  It was hard to say goodbye to the others in my district but I kept looking forward.  I knew it was going to be fine if I trust in the Lord and embraced the adventure that lies ahead.  Well yesterday I packed up and left the MTC at 4am and we took a bus to the airport.  We flew American airlines and the two planes I was on (the first to Chicago and the second to New York) were the smallest planes I think I've ever been on.  I wish my dad was on the plane so he could tell me what kind it was.  I can always count on him for his knowledge :)
        Dad to give you an idea of how small they were picture this: when you walked to the end of the ramp to the plane, the plane was about half the size of the ramp cover and you'd have to walk across a ramp connecting the plane to the ramp.  I'm not sure how well I'm explaining this.  Therefore, let me try to give you a better idea for the second plane.  The rows of the plane was one on one side and two on the other.  There were only about 17 rows, if that, and the over head compartment was only on one side and instead of having doors that raised up they rolled down. After we landed in New York (Westchester County/ White Plains) we walked off the plane on to the runway.  The flights weren't too bad I just was intrigued by how small the plane was.
        When we landed we were picked up by a couple of missionaries and the mission president, President Smith.  They were pretty nice people.  It was crazy because we didn't really know what to expect.  One of the missionaries who I immediately became friends with, Elder Sorensen looks like Quinn to me! lol. He drove some of us in the van back to the mission home.  He's pretty funny.  Unfortunately he's leaving tomorrow. He'll be heading back to Orem Utah. I think he said Orem. 
       That first night at the mission home we met some of the other new missionaries.  There was a Sis. Portugal from Virginia (original born in Puru) who didn't get sent to the MTC but is super nice! Sister Broderick and I immediately became friends with her.  There were some other Elders who came from Eastern states that were fun people.  A few of them had Skype training instead of reporting to the mtc.  I thought that was really interesting! We were all on our best behavior because we were all new and unsure of what to expect.  We had a lovely dinner with the mission president and his wife.  They let us call it a night early since most of us had been up since 3a.m.  Before the night was over we had the couples who help support the mission presidency come over and discus with us the logistics of the serious things like driving rules (if you get in a mission where you will drive), support cards that have our money, and MTC insurance info.  The next morning we had breakfast and talked about the spiritual side of life on a mission. 
     When the APS and some of the other missionaries came we received our assignments!  I have been assigned to serve in the Bronx! My companion's name is Sister Tu'Akalau.  On the way to meet everyone for the transfer meeting I asked Elder Sorensen and his companion (who's name starts with an S but slips my mind at this time) told me she was like a gangster Tongan haha. I was excited.  When we arrived at the transfer meeting in the parking garage underneath the Bronx chapel everyone was filled with excitement.  I'd say there were about 70 or so missionaries there hollering and cheering.  It was pretty intense but very cool at the same time.  All of the new missionaries introduced themselves.
      After all the introductions we were introduced to our companion ships! I met Sister Tu'Akalau (To-Walka-lou) and she seemed pretty nice.  I met a lot of new people today.  There were a few people from Arizona that I made some connections with.  Hermana Sanders was in my ward in Flagstaff my freshman year of college, but we never met.  However, she knew Sister Jones (Tayna) and Janice. It was weird making those connections.  Even weirder though I met Elder Blake Rossell that is really good friends with my friend Ashley Wright and lives about a mile from me.  It's weird because once we started making the connections I realized I had hung out with him in a group a few times! I knew he looked so familiar to me, but I didn't place it until I asked him his first name.  Anyhow he's flying home tomorrow so I asked him to send my love to Arizona!  There is one sister here who is staying for one more transfer. She is down in Harlem, Sister Dunacan, but she's super amazing and has made me feel so welcomed. 
     Sister T, as others call my companion lol, seems super cool.  I'm excited to get to know her better. Everyone tells me she is awesome! Our building that we live in is kind of smelly outside, but our actual apartment is pretty cute!  I love you all! I appreciate your love and support.  It means more to me than I could explain.
I love the gospel of Jesus Christ and I am excited to teach and meet the people here in New York.
Sister Johnson

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